Diocese of Oxford

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Diocese of Oxford
Ecclesiastical province Canterbury
Archdeaconries Berkshire, Buckingham, Oxford
Parishes 624
Churches 847
Cathedral Christ Church
Current leadership
Bishop John Pritchard, Bishop of Oxford
Suffragans Colin Fletcher, area Bishop of Dorchester
Alan Wilson, area Bishop of Buckingham
Andrew Proud, area Bishop of Reading
Archdeacons Karen Gorham, Archdeacon of Buckingham
Martin Gorick, Archdeacon of Oxford
Hedley Ringrose, Interim Archdeacon of Dorchester
Olivia Graham, Archdeacon of Berkshire
Judy French, Archdeacon-designate of Dorchester

The Diocese of Oxford forms part of the Province of Canterbury in England.


The Diocese of Oxford was created in 1541 out of part of the Diocese of Lincoln. Osney Abbey was designated the original cathedral, but in 1545 this was changed to St. Frideswide's which became Christ Church Cathedral.

In 1836 the Archdeaconry of Berkshire was transferred from the Diocese of Salisbury to Oxford. This comprises the county of Berkshire and parts of Wiltshire.

In 1837 the County of Buckingham was similarly transferred from the then Diocese of Lincoln, to become the Archdeaconry of Buckingham, although this annexation did not take effect until 1845.

The suffragan See of Buckingham was created in 1914, and was the suffragan bishop for the whole diocese until 1939 when the See of Dorchester was created; the See of Reading was re-created in 1942, after having been 'in abeyance' since 1909. Since 1994 the Bishop of Ebbsfleet (currently The Right Reverend Jonathan Goodall, consecrated in 2013) has provided 'alternative episcopal oversight' in this diocese (among twelve others in the western part of the Province of Canterbury) to those parishes which cannot in conscience accept the sacramental ministry of bishops who have participated in the ordination of women.

As of 2013, the Diocese was taking forward a pastoral scheme to create a new Archdeaconry of Dorchester covering all Oxfordshire except Oxford itself. On 3 March 2014, it was announced that Judy French is to become the first Archdeacon of Dorchester from June 2014;[1] retired archdeacon Hedley Ringrose has been Interim Archdeacon since 2013.

Current extent[edit]


The Diocese now covers the counties of

and has

Episcopal Areas[edit]

Map of the dioceses of the Church of England showing Oxford Diocese in mauve.

As of 2013 the diocese was divided into three Episcopal Areas corresponding to its Archdeaconries. The Bishop of Oxford has authority throughout the diocese, but also has primary responsibility for the city and suburbs of Oxford, which are part of the Archdeaconry of Oxford.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Diocese of Oxford – New archdeacon for Dorchester (Accessed 21 March 2014)

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 51°45′01″N 1°15′21″W / 51.750199°N 1.255853°W / 51.750199; -1.255853